Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

Ultimate piece of advice you'd give to someone starting A-levels '17 [Golden thread] Watch

Announcements
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Ally-mai)
    Does anyone have any advice for maths and further maths specifically?
    Thanks!
    The best piece of advice I can give is make sure your brain doesn't go completely "cold" over the summer!

    Obviously take a break and enjoy yourself, but before you go back to school make sure you re-read any GCSE notes you have, especially on topics you weren't entirely confident about.

    And make sure you're on top of topics like algebra and trig which are absolutely key for A level.

    Good luck
    Offline

    4
    ReputationRep:
    Specifically for those subjects in which you need to do independent reading - DO IT! And then do some wider reading on top - it will be invaluable!
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Be prepared for the most overwhelmingly stressful 2 years of your life.
    Be prepared to hate most of it.
    Be prepared for sleepless nights.
    Be prepared to take time away from it all.
    Be prepared to have no social life.
    Be prepared to do about 7 hours extra work per subject per week.
    BUT be prepared to make some great friends and maybe even find your passion. And remember at the end of it all you will achieve crucial qualifications. 😄
    Offline

    10
    ReputationRep:
    If you're struggling in any way, talk to one of your teachers. I found picking universities for my firm and insurance really tough and it stressed me out to the point where, having been confronted that my grades weren't good enough by a chem teacher I ended up in tears. Talking it through with her I saw things more clearly, and we also put into place a plan to help raise my grades, which seemed to be working. It would have been a lot easier though if I'd said something earlier.
    Offline

    5
    ReputationRep:
    A levels are easier if you enjoy the subjects, but pick at least one 'smart choice' and that will give you a good balance.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Always stay on top of all of your work, and any time you're going through the class notes on your own and don't understand something, meet with your teacher and ask them to explain it to you, don't leave it till the end.
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    Dear Thread Users,
    Honestly Thank you for this information, I started my A Levels on Tuesday (Business studies, Economics and Politics) as I’m studying privately via an online school as well as tutors. I’ve read through all of these and I’ve took a lot from it. I’ve got full access to my course, so I’ve been studying already! But now as I’ve learnt I’m going to make notes, Read back and make notes because that’s something I didn’t do too well. One piece of information “For every hour you do in class do 1 1/2 hours at home making notes” is gonna stick with me and I’m gonna be sure to follow that, Once again thank you, Also if anyone is studying any of the subjects stated above PM me or Add me so I have someone to speak to about the subjects.
    Offline

    6
    ReputationRep:
    Run while you still can
    Offline

    8
    ReputationRep:
    As a young lady about to begin A-levels this September... these posts are not helping my mental state.
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    Revise throughout the year, don't just start in Feb/March. I did that in AS and I found the exams a lot more daunting and scary. For A2, I started revising in October, and by May, I was confident and calm because I knew the courses inside out. But, be sure not to go too hard too early, know how to build from a gentle revision pace early in the year, to a more picked up pace around Christmas/January time, and then full speed in the lead up to exam time.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    search for YouTube videos on stuff you don't understand and don't wait to the end to understand them.
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    For God's sake, make sure your notes are good and don't leave your revision till the last minute!

    Also - do your personal statement summer of yr 12, bc you may not have time come september.
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    A simple one... use your free periods for actual work!!
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    Pick subjects you genuinely love (not just ones that you're good at at GCSE), organise/plan accordingly and allocate ample time for revision and a lot of homework, definitely do not underestimate the jump and 100% keep on top of work from the beginning or else you'll become overwhelmed.

    At the end of the day though, enjoy it! Take breaks and don't take on too much of a workload - you only need 3 a levels for uni so pick three and get three amazing grades instead of four average grades.
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    Buy lots of boxes of tissues to wipe away your tears.

    Sincerely,
    A former a level student who hates their life because they did 4
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    Don't be an arse to your teachers - they are the ones who set your target grades and if you antagonise them they are not going to be generous with you. You don't want to be in a position where you have to retake a year because they refuse to predict the grades you need.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    Make sure you always ask for help when you need it. I was the quieter member of my classes and would never ask for help, even when teachers would come over to me and ask me if I needed help - I would always say I was fine. This meant me going home spending ridiculous hours googling things and suffering in silence. This took so much time away from me to do any homework, coursework, or revision. When it came to revising for my exams, I just tried to hope information stuck in my head rather than getting a proper understanding of what I was trying to learn!

    Basically, just ask for help if you need it. You will complete your work quicker and gain better results, trust me!
    Offline

    6
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by happyflappy)
    1) Hit the ground running! Starting well and having a plan (see #10) will put you in good stead.

    2)Be ahead of your lessons (like by a chapter/topic or two) especially for subjects like maths/sciences. May use weekends or private study (if you have any) for this.

    3)Do your homework on time (seriously this is like the bare minimum). Start your homework the DAY you get it.

    4)For every hour spent in class do at least 1 1/2 hours (90 minutes) outside of class. Also make solid notes whilst you're doing the topics - it just makes life easier later and revision will be more condensing the info you've written up into memorable pieces instead of writing out your textbook.

    4) rinse out your teachers! I mean be reasonable of course...but use them whilst you're there. Word of caution: teachers don't like helping lazy students, so do your bit first and then go to them for clarification etc...

    5) may want to get the syllabus for your subject and cross off what you do in class as you go.

    6) Be punctual and organised, A-level studies are tedious enough, you don't want to be stressed out over these things as well. Keep your notes safe and place them somewhere you'll remember.

    7) take coursework seriously (even if it's only a small proportion of your grade)

    8) Ask for help! Speak up! Don't be afraid of looking 'stupid'. Unless you haven't done your bit by studying etc...but even then ask for help...

    9) join/start a club or society, raise money for charity, volunteer and read widely on whatever interests you.(studies come first, but assuming you do #6 you can maximise your time at sixth form/college).

    10) Have a plan. Don't worry if you lapse, get back on track, always revise/rework said plan until results day.

    11) make flash cards, posters, mindmaps when studying/revising. Personally, I don't use many colours just green, blue, red and black biro and and a yellow highlighter but whatever works for you...


    12) have fun in between

    Good luck


    You're an absolute life saver!!!
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    First of all the jump in some subjects is easier than others. I took on 4 A-levels: Chemistry, Maths, Psychology and Economics. The hardest were by far chemistry and maths. I took chemistry because I thought I was good at it (getting an A at GCSE, and A*A*A* in triple science) but in no way was I prepared for the workload or the difficulty. I strongly suggest that anyone who takes chemistry only takes it because they NEED it for their uni choice, if you're that far ahead in planning. Chemistry was a myth... luckily however I had 3 others to fall back on. Don't be put off from taking on 4 A-levels and dropping in the first month whilst you still can!Secondly, whilst you're in sixth form everyone reaches key milestones like learning to drive, turning 18 (and your first legal drink), getting a part time job (this can be especially tiring and many people give up near exam time) etc. Don't let these things distract you from your studies! I certainly did and it probably is not gonna be a joyous results day to say the least. Hate to sound cliché but work-life balance is imperative!
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    If you leave your revision until the last minute there is no way you will get the grade you want.
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    Break up or unrequited love?
    Help with your A-levels

    All the essentials

    The adventure begins mug

    Student life: what to expect

    What it's really like going to uni

    Rosette

    Essay expert

    Learn to write like a pro with our ultimate essay guide.

    Uni match

    Uni match

    Our tool will help you find the perfect course for you

    Study planner

    Create a study plan

    Get your head around what you need to do and when with the study planner tool.

    Study planner

    Resources by subject

    Everything from mind maps to class notes.

    Hands typing

    Degrees without fees

    Discover more about degree-level apprenticeships.

    A student doing homework

    Study tips from A* students

    Students who got top grades in their A-levels share their secrets

    Study help links and info

    Can you help? Study help unanswered threadsRules and posting guidelines

    Sponsored content:

    HEAR

    HEAR

    Find out how a Higher Education Achievement Report can help you prove your achievements.

    Groups associated with this forum:

    View associated groups
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Quick reply
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.